An electrical circuit inspired by the functionality of a neuron can operate in the quantum regime, according to recent models by a team of scientists from Spain and China. The researchers found that the distinct dynamics of information transport through a neuron are preserved when the signal is fully quantized. This merging of brain-function inspired networks and quantum informatics could lead to enhanced computing systems, as well as benefit growing research fields such as quantum machine learning.
The idea that information travels through neurons like electrical signals through a circuit is known as the Hodgkin-Huxley model. This was awarded the 1963 Nobel Prize in Medicine and created a strong link between physics and neuroscience. Since then many attempts to improve efficiency and speed in computation have taken inspiration from neurons, mimicking architectures found in the brain. Now, a new study revisits the fundamental Hodgkin-Huxley model to investigate its operation in the quantum regime.
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